The Institute for Advanced Social Sciences (IASS) was founded within the Faculty of Social Sciences at Waseda University in 2016 to organize and drive interdisciplinary, international, and application-oriented research in the social sciences and to apply research findings, in the best way possible, to education. The principle of our research is based on the following three goals:
▼“Integration” of the social sciences by recognizing the complexity and diversity of society and studying it as a whole.
▼“Interdisciplinarity” of the social sciences by uniting boundaries across fields through the incorporation of the development of the humanities and sciences.
▼“Application” of the social sciences by generating findings on subjects that require immediate response through emphasis on research activity that directly engages social problems.
Based on these principles, we seek to show how various intractable issues in 21st century global society, which could not be solved with the current academic paradigm, can be resolved. With this goal in mind, we aim to be a research center that will issue and develop applicable proposals and problem-solving oriented academic results via research projects based on a new academic network and the development of methodology for the integration, interdisciplinarity, and application of the social sciences. In doing so, we believe we can contribute to the formation of the 21st century global order while making the best use of the Japanese experience.
In terms of education, we hope that the IASS will be a place of practical research for our graduate students and that these research results will be applied to the interdisciplinary education of our undergraduate students. This idea is based on the fundamental principles of our department, which are “Integrated, Multidisciplinary Education and Research in the Social Sciences,” “Higher Education for the Public,” and “Cultivation of both Scholars and Professionals: Interaction between theory and practical experience.”
The IASS is divided into 4 divisions: Global Issues, Social Design, Contemporary Japanese Studies and Integrated Social Sciences. Faculty members belonging to these divisions form a project research group which will conduct research that spans 5 to 10 years.